Yes, you Ken

"If you were not going to make a difference, you would not be here." -- Ken Bliven

“If you were not going to make a difference, you would not be here.” — Ken Bliven

There are two kinds of creativity.

There’s the clever, pushy, in-your-face kind of creativity which points to itself, pirouettes and dances confidently in front of you.

Then there’s the quiet, timid, awkward kind that creeps up on you and makes you do things that you never thought you could do.

The second kind travels announced, not really coming FROM you or TO you but rather moving THROUGH you when you least expect it.

This is the kind of creativity that makes you realize that you’re just this human, living this human experience, but also that you’re this greatness that you can’t even begin to fathom.

The first kind of creativity has all kinds of names. Materialism. Intellectualism. Ego.

The second kind of creativity I shall simply call “Ken.”

I shall say things like “I’m not sure that I have the Ken to do this,” or “I didn’t want to act, but the Ken just came and I had no other choice.”

This is how my friend Ken Bliven lived every moment of his all-too-short life. But we can recognize the Ken in ourselves at any time and in any place.

Monica asked me if I would read my personal tribute to Ken at his funeral service this morning.

I pray that I have the Ken to do it.

Paul

Not a Eulogy

Ken Bliven, February 28, 1956 ~ January 6, 2017

Ken Bliven, February 28, 1956 ~ January 6, 2017

This is a picture of my friend, Ken.

I’m not going to speak of Ken in the past tense, because despite abandoning his shell, he is still here. Ken is like that. He’s open-minded. Always experimenting with possibilities.

We’ve patterned our lives after Ken. He’s taught us to be creative. And not just in one way, but in EVERY way we can. When you’re creative, you don’t just stop at the thing you do best. You try new things. If you’re a singer, you might become a sculptor, just because there’s this flow of something you can’t stop, that wants to come out into the world.

When Ken tries something new, he doesn’t worry about whether he’s going to be GOOD at it immediately, like most people. He just does it. He loses himself in it. He spends hours and hours figuring it out. And then, well, it usually turns out that Ken IS good at it, and it makes you a little jealous, but mostly just amazed that somebody could pull something out of nothing like that.

That’s what we do as creative people. We pull something out of nothing. But I know Ken knows (because I’ve talked to him about it) that we don’t really do that. The thing is there, we just allow it to flow through. Like this story about Ken.

Ken most certainly manifests himself as Ken, but he manifests in infinite other ways. Not just his children, or in his beautiful family. Ken Bliven is the nature of creativity itself.

Ken’s an explorer, and I’m certain that exploring is precisely what he’s doing right now. Oh, he might appear to go away for a while, like he always does. But when he comes back, it’s not just as your friend or son or dad, but as some truth that he is pointing out through something ELSE he’s brought into the world.

So I am QUITE CERTAIN that Ken is not gone. He’s merely upgrading, like he always does. He’s probably got life taken apart somewhere with some screwdrivers and a soldering iron. That’s what Ken does.

It is unfortunate and tragic for us that Ken’s physical presence is no longer here, but I’m certain that in the long run, Ken knows that the events sent into motion will make ALL of us better people once we overcome our initial grief and shock.

There is always that in-between period with Ken when you wonder if he’s going to pull it off, whether everything is going to be alright in the end, but you have FAITH. You have FAITH in Ken.

And I’m pretty certain that Ken has faith in us, which is why he left us with that beautiful line.

“If you were not going to make a difference, you would not be here.”

Ken has this quiet, unassuming confidence about him. He has this knowing old-soul look that comes from someplace else like you’ve known him through many many lifetimes and will continue to know him, like . . . forever.

So I’m not too worried about Ken. It’s just Ken being Ken.

I’m more worried about us. Oftentimes physical events happen in life that block us from the true meaning of things. Life for most people seems a little out of hand these days.

Ken probably decided to fix it from the other side.

So thanks Ken. I’ll see you around.

Paul

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